May 21, 2018

2018's Best-selling Reissues on Vinyl (so far...)
by James

by James Forryan

hmv London; 21/05/2018


"Like the legend of the Phoenix, I've just eaten a whole packet of chocolate HobNobs..." Editor,

2018's Best-selling Reissues on Vinyl (so far...)

We're almost six months into 2018 and this year has seen many more artists looking to reissue their back catalogues on vinyl, but which of the new reissues arriving in 2018 have been the most popular at hmv stores?

hmv's Vinyl Week just around the corner and following on from last week's list of this year's most popular new releases on vinyl, it's time for our round-up of the year's best-selling reissues so far...

Roxy Music

10. Roxy Music: Roxy Music

Virgin EMI Records

Roxy Music's 1972 debut album placed the band in a unique space somewhere between the avant-garde art rock of Velvet Underground and the preposterous glam rock of T-Rex and The Sweet. Much like Velvet Underground themselves, Roxy Music's influence far outweighs their commercial success and that influence has continued to inform the work of a broad variety of artists from Spandau Ballet to Radiohead.

This year marked the 45th anniversary of their debut album's release and the vinyl version of the newly remastered reissue has proved incredibly popular in our stores, edging Roxy Music into our Top 10 highest-sellers this year so far.

The Chronic

9. Dr Dre: The Chronic

Death Row Records

First released in 1992, Dr. Dre's debut solo album following the split of N.W.A. pioneered the 'G-funk' sound that would dominate the rest of the decade as far as West Coast rap was concerned, setting the template for a bass-heavy sound less focussed on the use of samples and influencing countless records by the likes of Snoop Dogg, Warren G, Tupac Shakur and Bone Thugs-N-Harmony.

Despite the album's huge influence, The Chronic hadn't been available on vinyl since 2002 until a remastered reissue arrived in February this year, which goes some way to explaining its appearance at No. 9 on our list of best-selling reissues. The other explanation, of course, is that it's arguably one of the finest rap albums ever made.

Scary Monsters (2017 Remaster)

8. David Bowie: Scary Monsters (and Super Creeps)


Perhaps not surprisingly given the overwhelming outpouring of grief that met the news of his death in 2016, David Bowie's outstanding body of work has benefitted from a surge in popularity ever since and a new series of vinyl reissues have become some of our biggest sellers this year, with his 1980 album Scary Monsters (and Super Creeps) being just one of four Bowie albums to find themselves in our Top 10.

Featuring hits such as 'Fashion' and 'Ashes to Ashes', Bowie's 14th album followed his 'Berlin trilogy' and was less focussed on experimentation the its predecessors, but still sounds quite unlike anything else and is arguably one of his finest records.

"Heroes" (2017 Remaster)

7. David Bowie: "Heroes"


The second of Bowie's Berlin albums is another of our best-selling reissues this year, this version based on a remaster done in 2017 and overseen by the album's producer and Bowie's right-hand man in the studio, Tony Visconti. Along with the other albums in the Berlin trilogy, Heroes had not previously been sold individually as an LP for 25 years, making the new reissues a great opportunity to fill any gaps in your Bowie collection and plenty of vistors to our stores have taken advantage.


6. Kendrick Lamar: DAMN. (Collector's Edition)


Earlier this year, Kendrick Lamar made history when his fourth album became the first non-jazz or classical record to receive a Pulitzer prize, as well as earning a nomination for Album of the Year and winning Best Rap Album at the Grammys. Shortly after the album was first released in 2017, fans began to notice the album's narrative also worked in reverse and, as it turns out, this had been a conscious decision from the album's inception.

Lamar re-released the 'collector's edition' version of the album, with the tracklist running in reverse order to the original, in December last year and a vinyl version arrived in February, which narrowly misses out on a spot in our Top 5 vinyl reissues of the year so far.


5. Lou Reed: Transformer

We Are Vinyl

As if having four of his own albums in our Top 10 wasn't enough, David Bowie's talents as a producer have ensured that he is involved with exactly half of the 10 best-selling vinyl reissues to arrive in our stores this year, thanks to his role as co-producer of Lou Reed's second solo album Transformer.

Recorded in London's Trident Studios and produced by Bowie and former Spiders from Mars guitarist Mick Ronson, Transformer is arguably one of Lou Reed's best solo albums and certainly his most successful commercially, including two of his biggest solo hits on the form of 'Perfect Day' and 'Walk on the Wild Side'. Amongst the album's other contributors is Klaus Voormann, who is perhaps best-known for designing the cover of Revolver for The Beatles and plays bass on 'Perfect Day'.

Low (2017 Remaster)

4. David Bowie: Low


The first - and in our humble opinion, best – of Bowie's Berlin albums is one of two Bowie reissues in our Top 5. Another to get the remaster treatment from Tony Visconti in 2017, the reissued version of Low arrived in stores in February this year and wasted no time in climbing onto our list of best-sellers.

Including the superb 'Sound and Vision', the brooding 'Warszawa' and the epic 'Subterraneans', the new remaster sounds better than ever and has proved to be one of the most popular vinyl reissues of 2018 so far.

Aladdin Sane

3. David Bowie: Aladdin Sane


Of the four Bowie albums on our list of best-selling vinyl reissues for this year, it's Aladdin Sane that has proved the most popular in our stores – specifically the version that arrived in April pressed onto silver vinyl.

Direct Hits

2. The Killers: Direct Hits

Virgin EMI Records

This greatest hits compilation from Brandon Flowers and co. first arrived in 2013 and is a bit of a misfit on our list of reissues in the sense that the compilation wasn't issued on vinyl at the time, only being issued on wax for the first time this year. The fact that this greatest hits compilation is so high on our list might be less of a surprise if you already know the extraordinary history of the band's most enduring hit 'Mr. Brightside'.

First released in 2003, 'Mr. Brightside' achieved only minor success before a re-release the following year saw the song peak at No. 10 in both the UK and the US. But here's where things start to get a bit weird: some 14 years later, the song has barely left the UK Singles chart, spending more than 200 weeks in the Top 100, where it has featured at some point at least once for 12 of the last 14 years. Nobody's really sure why 'Mr. Brightside' has become the musical equivalent of those skeletons from Jason & The Argonauts, but if further proof of its popularity were needed, here it is on our list of best-sellers.

Jeff Wayne's Musical Version of the War of the Worlds

1. Jeff Wayne: The War of the Worlds

Sony Music CMG

Readers under the age of 30 might be surprised to find what is essentially a prog-rock musical adaptation of an H.G. Wells sci-fi novel at the top of our list, but Jeff Wayne's musical version of War of the Worlds is still one of the 40 biggest-selling albums of all time in the UK, certified platinum nine times over and outselling the likes of Paul Simon's Graceland, Mike Oldfield's Tubular Bells and even ABBA's Greatest Hits.

First released in 1978, this year marked the album's 40th anniversary and the occasion was marked with a newly remastered vinyl reissue, complete with original paintings, script and lyrics sheets, which has absolutely flown off the shelves since it arrived in stores in January. Only The Greatest Showman has outpaced Jeff Wayne's musical in terms of sales this (and even then there's less than 200 copies in it), but the soundtrack is far and away the most popular vinyl reissue so far this year.